1377 Edward III’s eldest son, Edward the Black Prince, who was supposed to succeed his father as the next King of England, died in 1376.
So, the throne of England was passed to Edward’s 10 year old grandson; Richard II on the 22nd June, and was crowned King of England, on the 16th July at Westminster Abbey.
Obvious choice of Regent for the young King would have been John of Gaunt, but with much opposition to his appointment, some believing he wanted the throne for himself. It resulted in no Regent, but a council to decide policy and advise the young King’s minister’s … in effect, England had no government during Richard’s early years.
1380 John Wycliffe began translating the New Testament Bible from Latin into English.
The Poll Tax was introduced, where every man and woman over the age of fifteen, had to pay one shilling to the crown.
1381 The Poll Tax levied upon its people brought unrest, leading to the Peasant’s Revolt.
John Ball and Watt Tyler, rebel leaders marched on London with 10,000 supporters, and met the King at Mile End on the 14th June. Richard II promised the abolishment of the Poll Tax, and most returned home; unaware the Crown would not keep their word.
John Ball and Watt Tyler along with a group of hard core rebels, met with Richard II on the 15th June. They demanded a complete reform of the law, abolishment of all Lordships and the disestablishment of the church.
Watt Tyler’s outburst against the King saw William Walworth, Mayor of London, draw his dagger and strike him down. The murder of Tyler brought any resistance to an end.
1382 Minor uprisings against the Poll Tax continued for many weeks, as hard core rebels of the cause had been hunted down and killed.
William of Wykeham, the Bishop of Winchester and Chancellor of England, founded Winchester College.
1384 John Wycliffe, believed the bible was the only true religious authority, and believed in the translation from Latin to English. For his beliefs, he was labelled as a heretic by the Pope and the English church council. In the December he died, and his books were burned, and his body removed from consecrated ground by order of the Pope.
1387 Richard was forced to accept, the Lords Appellant control of the government, led by the Duke of Gloucester.
1388 As a result of political and military actions, under the Lords Appellant, many of Richard’s friends and advisor’s were either executed or sent into exile.
1389 Richard declares himself to be of age, and chose the direction his government would take. He appoints William of Wykeham as his Lord Chancellor.
1394 Richards leads the English army; reconquering the West of Ireland.
Queen Anne of Bohemia, Richard II’s first wife died in June, aged 27.
1395 Richard invaded Ireland, defeating their chieftains in the south east, and eighty were forced to pay homage to him.
Richard attempted to create a new alliance between the English crown and Ireland, over grievances levelled against Anglo-Irish landowners.
1396 Richard II marries Isabella of Valois daughter of the King of France, and signs a 28 year truce between England and France.
1397 Richard exacts revenge against the Lord’s Appellant, and exiled Henry Bolingbroke, seizing their lands and goods.
Thomas of Woodstock was murdered, Richard the Earl of Arundel was executed, Thomas Beauchamp, the Earl of Warwick along with Thomas Arundel were exiled.
1398 Henry of Bolingbroke, the Duke of Hereford and Thomas Mowbray, the Duke of Norfolk, each accused the other of treason, and were exiled.
Richard (Dick) Whittington, becomes Lord Mayor of London.
1399 Richard II was in Leinster, Ireland, where his cousin Roger Mortimer and Governor had been killed by the Irish.
News reached Richard, that Henry Bolingbroke had landed at Ravenspur in Yorkshire, he returned home, to find his people had turned against him.
The Earl of Northumberland took him prisoner, and handed him over to Henry. Richard confessed before Parliament, of being unworthy to reign and gave his crown to Henry Bolingbroke.
Richard was imprisoned at Pontefract Castle in Yorkshire.
Richard II died on the 14th February of starvation aged 33 at Pontefract Castle, and was buried at Westminster.